Plaza and Las Vegas Club $100 Loss Rebate

The Plaza and Las Vegas Club are offering a $100 loss rebate for all new players that sign up for the PlayLV player’s club.  Unlike some other loss rebates, Las Vegas residents are included in this promotion.  The two casinos are located across the street from each other in downtown Las Vegas at the intersection of Fremont Street and Main Street.

The promotion is open to all players that have never had a player’s card from either Plaza or Las Vegas Club.  Players from The Western do not qualify as that casino operated under the PlayLV player’s club before it closed in January.

A new player must sign up for a player’s card at either Plaza or Las Vegas Club.  The player’s club hours are 8am-midnight.  The new player then has a freeroll of up to $100.  Only losses in the first 24 hours are valid.  Players then have 24 hours to report the loss to the player’s club to receive the rebate.

The rebate is split into two payments of free play.  The first half of the rebate is released by the end of the following day.  The second rebate is released on the third day of the following month and is valid for six months after your original play.

Slot and video poker loss rebates are based on the following chart:

Loss 1st Rebate 2nd Rebate
$10-$19 5 5
$20-$29 10 10
$30-$39 15 15
$40-$49 20 20
$50-$59 25 25
$60-$69 30 30
$70-$79 35 35
$80-$89 40 40
$90-$99 45 45
$100+ 50 50

Table game players only receive a rebate on 10% of their losses.  Plaza has a wider variety of table games.  Las Vegas Club has lower minimum bets and a better craps game.  Both properties offer the proprietary game Most Liberal 21 even though the name is deceiving because it is not liberal.  The chart below shows the table game rebates:

Loss 1st Rebate 2nd Rebate
$50-$99 $5 $5
$100-$149 $10 $10
$150-$199 $15 $15
$200-$249 $20 $20
$250-$299 $25 $25
$300-$349 $30 $30
$350-$399 $35 $35
$400-$449 $40 $40
$450-$499 $45 $45
$500+ $50 $50

$100 Rebate Strategy

Some games are disqualified from the promotion.  Those games are typically video versions of table games.  These include the Shoot to Win Craps machine at Plaza and the video roulette, video Ultimate Texas Hold’em, and Video blackjack machines at Las Vegas Club.

Las Vegas Club has many video poker machines that pay back 99.5%-100%.  This includes 9/6 Jacks or Better and many old coin games scattered throughout the northwest side of the casino.  Any of those machines are perfect for this promotion.  Just make sure there is nothing on the machine stating that it is ineligible for the promotion.

The video poker at Plaza is above average for Las Vegas, but does not pay back as well as Las Vegas Club video poker machines.  For that reason, I would accept this promotion at Las Vegas Club.  If you are set on playing at Plaza then there are many 9/5 Jacks or Better machines there as well as 9/6 Double Double Bonus if you prefer higher variance.

Table Game Strategy

This promotion is much better for video poker but if you prefer to play table games I suggest playing 10x craps at Las Vegas Club.  Come bankrolled to handle some swings.  Play the line bets and full odds.  The promotional terms do not exclude craps odds from the promotion so presumably they are included but you may want to ask the pit boss.  I doubt they are able to watch closely enough to know if your losses were from odds or flat bets.

Whichever promotion you choose, make sure you set a win limit.  The point of this promotion is to freeroll them and actually win, not to have to settle for the loss rebate.

If you end up having to settle for the loss rebate then you will be required to play the free play at the property that you originally played.  This is another reason to play at Las Vegas Club.  While their coin operated video poker machines do not award free play, there are plenty of 9/6 Jacks or Better machines that offer free play.  The bar offers 9/5 Jacks or Better if you prefer sitting there.

Here are the promotional terms.  It is always a good idea to ask the player’s club representative any questions that you have about qualifying machines and rules.  Some of these promotions can change from day to day or end suddenly so there is no reason put off taking advantage this promotion.

Station Casinos Adds Mobile Sports Betting

Screenshot of the new Sports Connection

The long awaited mobile app for Android phones has been launched by Station Casinos.  This application has been under development for two years.  The app went live this morning.  It replaces the old sports pagers used by Station Casinos sports bettors to make bets away from the casino.  All pagers must be returned so that players can get their deposits back.  Players that would like to continue mobile betting will required to set up a mobile account as the sports pagers will no longer be supported.  The mobile app can only be used within the state of Nevada.  The new Android app also replaces phone wagers which will no longer be accepted.

Adding an Android sports betting app is not the only innovation released today by Station Casinos.  The company also completely overhauled its online sports betting system called Sports Connection.  Instead of the buggy software that has been used for about two years, the software has been replaced by a website that is similar to offshore online sports books.

One noticeable difference is that players must log into a closed intranet system.  This system is hosted by Cox Communications.  This means that players must log off the standard internet while placing their bets and log into this private system.  The software does this automatically.  This prevents players outside of Nevada from using the service.  All players must be a Las Vegas Cox Communications customer to use the internet service.

In addition to a new mobile app and improved online wagering, players may also now deposit by debit or credit card.  All deposits and withdrawals must be made at a Station Casinos location.

Accounts must be created at a Station Casinos sports book.  Players are required to be 21 years of age or older with proper ID and have a Station Casinos Boarding Pass.  The player’s ID must not be near expiration.  Station Casinos will suspend a player’s account if their ID on file is within 14 days of expiration.  There are 17 Station Casinos in the Las Vegas Valley.  Locations include Red Rock Resort, Green Valley Ranch, Palace Station, and Boulder Station.

Players earn comps on their mobile and online sports wagers.  Every $500 wagered on sports awards $1 in comps.  Comps may be used for restaurants, hotel rooms, and free slot play. Another perk is that Sports Connection players that use Sprint as their mobile provider will receive 10% off of their monthly service.

This news comes just before the busiest time of the year.  Sports books all over Las Vegas are looking forward to NFL betting.  Players will soon be making their best NFL picks in an attempt to beat the sports books and leave Las Vegas a winner.

Riviera $1000 Slot Play Freeroll

Riviera pulled this promotion.  It is no longer available and is not likely to come back.

Riviera Las Vegas is offering players a $1000 freeroll on slots.  It appears that this play is also valid for video poker machines.  Any machine in the casino should qualify as long as it pays points.  This would disqualify some video versions of table games, including video blackjack and Shoot to Win Craps. Table games do not qualify for this promotion.

Riviera will reimburse losses up to $1000 in a single day on a tiered system.  The chart can be found in the image on this page.  A playing day starts when a player first arrives and visits the player’s club to get a new card.  A player has until 11:59pm on that same day to claim reimbursement of their losses.  If a player fails to go to the player’s club before 11:59pm on their first day of play, they will forfeit all rights to the promotion.

The promotion is returned in free slot play.  Half of the loss return is added to the player’s card immediately.  The other half is added on the third of the following month and expires after one year.  A player can release the free play right at the machine of their choice.

The best way to play this promotion is to play the highest limit slots or video poker that you can find.  Riviera has slots up to $25, and video poker up to $5.  The $5 video poker can be played as high as $25 a hand.  The best strategy is to play for a large jackpot and not not need the promotion.  This is a good time to play recklessly and way over your bankroll hoping to hit a big win.  If a player loses and gets the free play, I suggest playing lower in an attempt to lower the variance to get their money back through the free slot play.

This is an interesting promotion.  Riviera is proving once again that they have no problem taking a big chance with a promotion in an attempt to get their name out there and bring players in the door.  The terms show that they reserve the right to modify or cancel this promotion at any given time so I suggest not waiting too long to hit this.  If I did not have a player’s card there already I would be taking advantage of this as soon as possible.  Mrs. Pokeraddict also has a player’s card there, so this household is going to miss out on this promo.

Edit: Riviera has made a lot of changes from the original promotion.  Multi hand video poker cannot be played for this promotion.  Video poker machines higher than $1 do not qualify for this promotion.  Some high denomination slots have also been removed from the promotion.

Allegiant Air Adds More Absurd Fees

Las Vegas based Allegiant Air has announced yet another fee that is not industry standard.  Allegiant Air will now charge $15-$35 when you carry a bag on the airplane that must be stowed in the overhead compartment.  This forces virtually every passenger to pay some sort of extra fee to board the plane.  Flyers must either pay the $15-$30 while buying their ticket or they will face a $35 fee at the gate.

At the very least this violates the spirit of the Department of Transportation rule that fees that are to be paid by all travelers must be disclosed in the set price.  Considering virtually all of Allegiant Air’s flights are not daily service, passengers will have to either pay the $15-$35 carry on fee, or the $20-$35 checked luggage fee, since all trips will be multiple days.  Note that this fee is per segment.  If you plan to connect and take two Allegiant Air flights to reach your destination, you will get hit with the fee twice.

Allegiant Air already has some outrageous fees.  Below is a list of some of them:

  • Seat assignments - $10-$25 each segment
  • Using the website to purchase ticket - $10 each segment
  • Using call center to purchase ticket - $15 each segment
  • Priority Boarding - $9.99 each segment
  • Soft drinks and water - $2
  • Food - $3-$5
  • Alcohol - $6-$7
  • Checked bags $20-$35 each segment

To avoid the website or call center booking fee, a passenger must go to the airport.  My family took a trip to Rapid City, SD over the weekend.  Many weeks ago we went to McCarran to buy the tickets.  We found out after we got to the desk that tickets can only be purchased before 11am.  Luckily we just made it, but that was just another example of poor business ethics.  The person that entered our tickets took about 20 minutes and made a major error that we had to call back to Allegiant Air to fix.  It is hard to imagine Allegiant Air really wants people to go to the airport and slow down their lines to buy tickets, but it saved us $80 to do it as we bought four round trip tickets.

I think this will keep us from flying Allegiant Air in the future.  If their fares are still extremely low, and the fees plus fares are still less than competitors, we may consider it.  This loses a lot of goodwill on behalf of Allegiant Air though.  They are taking advantage of their monopolies.  I think at some point passengers will get fed up with this.  If they do, it may hurt overall Las Vegas tourism since Allegiant Air connects about 20 cities with Las Vegas that may otherwise have no reasonable way to visit.

This fee will go into effect either later tonight or tomorrow.  If you plan on flying on Allegiant Air you should consider buying your ticket now to avoid this fee.  When Allegiant Air lowered the size of their allowed carry on bag years ago they tried to nail me with the checked bag fee even though I bought the ticket before the change.  They forced me to pay the checked bag fee even though they changed the terms after I bought my ticket.  I charged it back at the end of my vacation and I won because Allegiant Air did not even bother to fight it.  I wonder how many passengers just paid it without a fight.  It would not surprise me if Allegiant Air tries the same thing here.

Should You Move to Las Vegas?

As my articles are finding their way to more mainstream media, and my blog begins to focus more on Las Vegas, I have been getting asked the same question more and more through my blog, by email, and discussions that I participate in.  “I play poker at (insert random city’s poker room)” or “I am a winning sports bettor at (insert random online sports book)” and “I am thinking about taking a shot.  Should I move to Las Vegas?”

If you have to ask, you probably are not ready for such a big move.  I will however try my best to answer the question anyway with general observations and information.  Almost every time I get asked these types of questions, I do not get much in the way of details.  Even after asking for more info, I get very little in the way of information that might help me give useful advice.

“Can I Get a Job in Las Vegas?

The most important thing to consider is that Las Vegas is nothing like any other city.  This is a tough town.  There are few jobs here.  Most potential employers want to know that you can survive a full year in Las Vegas before committing to you.  That is because many people cannot make it here a year because their vices destroy them.  Some people cannot handle the heat.  Others have poor bankroll management.  If you are going to move here, you should take into consideration that you will likely not find a job quickly, or if you do find one it will be part time, low paying, or not what you want to do.  This advice goes more towards men.  Woman are going to have a much easier time finding a job.  That is just how it is here.

“Can I Make a Living Playing Poker in Las Vegas?”

Chances are that you are playing in small poker room if you are asking this.  You have gotten to know most of the players that play your game, and know what to expect when you sit down.  Poker rooms in smaller casino cities tend to be looser games.  When combining that with how you will know your opponents, it is safe to assume that the games that you are playing back home are softer.  You should be absolutely killing your hometown games to even consider moving to Las Vegas.

Once you have established that you are capable of crushing the games in your hometown casinos, I suggest visiting Las Vegas for at least two weeks and preferably in the summer after the World Series of Poker.  The reason that I suggest doing this after the WSOP is that it will be the hottest part of the summer, and you will get a better idea of what the regular poker games are like.  Make sure that you drive here or rent a car.  Drive as much of the city as possible so that you can see the parts of Las Vegas that are desirable to live in, and the parts of Las Vegas that not somewhere you would want to be carrying a lot of cash.  Talk to apartment leasing agents, real estate agents, and players at the poker table that live here.  They will be full of good advice on where to live.

While you are visiting, play as much poker as possible.  Play during the day, during prime time, graveyard, and early in the morning.  You are likely to find the games to be softer between 9pm-5am Thursday through Saturday.  Can you handle that lifestyle?  If not, how much worse were the games at other hours?  Can you adjust to playing with a bunch of nitty rocks?  Some games during the day are full of players just grinding out hands between jackpots.

Once you have established whether you can beat the games or not, whether you can stand the summer heat, and what part of town you live in, it is time to look for somewhere to live.

If you do not have kids, check out some of the highrises on Las Vegas Blvd.  They will be more expensive than living further out, but then you will not have to drive as much.  That can even itself out.  Every time I drive to The Strip from Summerlin I burn about $5 in gas.  That equals $150/month before I figure in the other costs associated with operating a car.

The convenience of living on The Strip can be enormous for a poker player.  You will not have to worry about driving around the city in the middle of the night, which can be dangerous due to the drunks.  You can also walk to the game of choice if you choose your apartment’s location well.

If you have children, then your choices will be limited to the outskirts.  I live in Summerlin, but there are plenty of decent areas that are family friendly in Henderson, Southern Highlands, the far southwest, and the far north and northwest parts.  You can pick a nice area and still be 15 minutes from The Las Vegas Strip during off peak travel times.  The schools are better than you would think in those areas.  The closer you get to Las Vegas Blvd, the worse the schools and crime get so keep that in mind.

“Can I Live in Las Vegas Without a Car?”

The short answer here is no.  If you can live on The Strip, and only ever want to play at poker rooms that you can walk to from your apartment, then you can probably pull it off.  The problem is that over time you will get sick of the same people in those poker rooms, both staff and players.  Eventually there will be a poor floor ruling, or a guy you always end up seated next to that never showers, and your opinion of that room will change.  If you are on one end of The Strip, you will grow tired of the long walks in the middle of the night to and from the other side of The Strip. There will also be games that are off strip that you will be unable to play in.

If you plan on living off the Las Vegas Strip, you must have a car.  The rest of the Las Vegas metro area is one giant suburb.  The city blocks are wide, and there are few crosswalks, so walking is not really an option either.  The city is not pedestrian friendly in the slightest bit once you leave Las Vegas Blvd.  You may think that you can take the bus and be fine, but imagine waiting for the bus in 105 degree heat every day multiple times. The bus system is also not convenient for getting to and from The Strip in a timely manner.

“I am moving to Las Vegas anyway”

The first thing to do is research how much it will cost to move to Las Vegas.  Price how much a Uhaul is and how much gas you will need to get it here.  You will also need to set aside money to get your new apartment ready.  That may include renting or buying furniture, but will also include all of the standard household staples.  Be prepared for Nevada’s most unfair tax too.  The tag for your car will run about 2-3% of its value every year.  If you have a newer car, your license plate will cost you at least $500 each year.  My two six year old cars each run about $300 a year.

I also have some bankroll suggestions.  First, leave $5000 in a bank outside of Las Vegas.  Keep it there in case of emergencies.  If you fail, you will have that money to fall back on where you take your next step in life.  If you go completely bust, you can have some of it wired to a casino cage for pick up so you can get moved back home.  This may seem harsh, but what kind of plan do you think the panhandlers here had to fall back on when they went bust?  You need to have the ability to get out of town if things do not go well for you.

You should also stash living expenses for at least one year.  You will probably have to put up about 25% of that in deposits, maybe more if your only income is your aspiring Las Vegas poker career.  You will also need about $10,000 in cash in addition to this.  That gives you over 30 buyins to 1/2 NL.  That means that you should not move here to play poker or bet on sports for a living if you do not have $20,000 or more in cash plus backup cash to move if you flop.

I am not trying to discourage anyone from visiting Las Vegas and having fun.  Moving to Las Vegas is an entirely different story though.  Make sure that you are well bankrolled for such a move.  You are not going to move here and win $25,000 playing blackjack your first week.  Living in Las Vegas takes discipline.  It also takes incredible bankroll and life management skills.

Good luck in your move if you decide to ever do it.  I cannot imagine living anywhere else.  Just keep in mind that this is a tough city to make a living in right now.

O’Sheas to Close April 30th

Caesar’s Entertainment employees are reporting that O’Sheas will be closing on April 30, 2012.  Culinary Union rules require a casino to give 60 days notice to a closure.  Casesar’s Entertainment, parent company of O’Sheas, is reported to have announced the news to employees on March 1st.  The company has not made a formal announcement to the media.

The news was expected, the timing was just unknown.  The Linq project will take the place of O’Sheas.  Imperial Palace, located just north of O’Sheas, is set for a major remodel and rebranding later this year or early in 2013.

O’Sheas offers beer pong in their large bar area.  They also offer an affordable food court.  O’Sheas is also unique in that their poker tables used for cash games are located at the front of the casino in the middle of the party.  Most patrons see the poker tables before anything else.  This makes for some wild games.  O’Sheas is also known for the worst blackjack in Las Vegas.  All of their blackjack games pay 6-5 on blackjack, including their 8 deck shoes.

While the bad gambling will not be missed, the party atmosphere will be missed.  The new Margaritaville casino next door is likely to take some of the party amenities from O’Sheas, and in the long term the Linq project will provide Las Vegas visitors with a new Las Vegas Strip experience.

Sickest Thing I Have Seen Since Moving to Las Vegas

My domain name is a bit of a joke.  I took the name from an MSN spade player “Spadeaddict”.  I never thought it would ever be used for anything serious.  Little did I know how brandable and catchy it was.  I tried to buy the .com for as much as $2500 and the seller would not come off of it, telling me I was nowhere near his price.  An Everleaf Gaming skin now operates with the .com.  Personally, I think it is a terrible name for an online poker room, but that is an entirely different story.  I used the name Pokeraddict as a joke years ago and it stuck, but last night I saw first hand how it could not be a joke to some people.

After playing bad deep in a HORSE tournament at M Resort, I stopped at a video poker bar that has good video poker, high quality wine, and a good player’s club.  The actual place is irrelevant.  There is no reason to call them out.  It is a higher end bar.

I went there to relax and have a couple of glasses of wine. I needed to calm down from my implosion in the tournament.  I sat next to an attractive, professional looking woman in her 30′s at the only seat open with a machine at the bar.  I am friends with the bartender and he introduced us.  We had some small talk and I played.  After a while it was obvious this woman was on a major tilt.  She was shoving $100 bills in the video poker machine every few minutes.

I noticed that this woman had no idea what the basic strategy was for the game that she was playing.  She was playing 9/5 Double Double Bonus which is a very high variance game.  She was misplaying many of her hands, causing her to lose much more than what the typical expected loss would be.  After seeing this, the woman told me that she always wins playing video poker except for the last two days.  I knew that was impossible but just nodded.  Through some of our discussion, I realized she had no idea how the machine even worked.

She then started getting really upset.  She went on a “These machines are rigged” rant.  She must not have truly thought that, because she went to the ATM and took out what appeared to be a $2000 cash advance from her credit card.  When she came back, she told me she was already stuck over $1000 that day and dumped $3000 the day before.  Before I had finished my second glass of wine, she had managed to dump her entire $2000 cash advance into the video poker machine.

She broke down some more, then tried to take out more money from the ATM.  I called the bartender over and we agreed she needed to go.  They need her to leave on her own, they cannot just ban someone for losing too much money.  Before the discussion could begin, she sat back down and got on her phone.  Her second attempt at a cash advance failed and she was calling American Express to find out why.  She was drunk and screaming at the AMEX customer service.  It seems she is in major debt to them and had reached her cash advance limit, at least for the day. She screamed “I’m going to stop paying my bill if you do not approve my cash advance” which is not the way to get a bank to loan you money.  I think she is lucky AMEX stopped her from spewing more.

When she hangs up, the bartender and I try to convince her to leave but she took some major offense to it.  She went back to the ATM and came back with $60.  She proclaimed she would win it all back with that $60.  She told me that was all the money she had left in the bank and needed to win to cover her bills.  In just a few minutes, it was gone.

She sat at the machine for a few minutes with a dazed and blank look on her face.  She then proceeded to ask the bartender for money.  That was not going to happen.  She then made a statement to me that I will not put on my blog.  I will just say she offered to take care of me (or any man I guess) in the parking lot for $500.  She knew if she could get just $500 more, she could win all of her money back.  I was speechless and never really acknowledged that I heard it.  This classy looking woman was willing to sell herself for more gambling money and I am sure she was serious as she had a desperate look.  Maybe she had done that before, who knows.

She then had a complete mental breakdown.  She badmouthed her husband who she says pays no attention to her, the bartender, the bar, and Las Vegas as a whole.  I could not bring myself to move to another seat or leave, my intent was helping the bartender get her out of there.  She had lost all of her money, was desperate, and was completely wasted.  She could not get herself home and needed help.  I certainly wanted nothing to do with getting her home, especially after her indecent proposal.  The bartender and the woman figured out some arrangement and a ride service came and picked her up.

What I saw last night has left me sick to my stomach.  It affected me all day so I figured I would write about it.  I have seen people spew over $10,000 in chips at a poker table in just a few hours and thought nothing of it.  When that has happened, the losing player has always taken it in stride.  I always assumed players that lost that much could afford it.  The way this woman acted, it was as if her life had been ruined over her video poker binges.

Even if this bar banned the woman, there are hundreds of other places to gamble including all grocery stores and gas stations.  Nobody can save her from that but herself.  I saw first hand tonight how a gambling addiction can destroy someone.  I had never seen anything like it before, and even though I know it goes on in this city every day, I hope I never see it again.

It is Almost Baseball Season

My favorite sport is by far the NFL.  Once the Super Bowl is over, I am already looking forward to the preseason NFL games.  I do not like basketball at all even though I may participate in an NCAA tournament bracket for the fun of it.  Although it is a distant second place, Major League Baseball is still a sport that I can watch.

I grew up in Atlanta and was a Braves fan when I was a kid.  Saying that they were one of the worst teams in baseball year after year is an understatement.  By the time I was in my late teens, they started winning every year.  Like most Atlanta Braves fans, I grew tired of them.  The strike finished me off for them.  Still though, I guess you could say that they are my favorite team.

Now that I live in Las Vegas I can bet on baseball.  Bets can even be placed over the internet or cell phone with Las Vegas sportsbooks.  Once I got my office in Las Vegas last summer, I subscribed to mlb.tv.  I would put $10 or so on a huge underdog, sit in my office recliner, and watch it out of the corner of my eye.  It gave me something to cheer for, and actually gave me some emotion to help with my writing.

I am far from an expert at making MLB picks.  I basically used the theory that the team that was the biggest underdog probably had the lowest vig since they would be completely out of favor by the betting public.  I actually managed to win about $400 just betting big underdogs.  I am sure that was a fluke, but I think there is still some value in betting big money line dogs in baseball.

This time between the NFL season and Major League Baseball season is long.  I am looking forward to having something on TV in my office that is not a tired old sitcom off of Netflix.  For some reason, having something interesting streaming on my computer that I have a few dollars on helps me write all of my gambling articles.

Major Improvements at Riviera Las Vegas

The Riviera in Las Vegas has made some major improvements since coming out of bankruptcy.  Riviera is going in a direction that few Las Vegas Strip casinos have chosen to take.  Riviera has added some decent table games and made the rules more player friendly.  A convention room was converted into The Strip’s only bingo room.  They have also improved the buffet and as I posted about earlier, the R Steakhouse is excellent and a great value.  The hotel has also undergone a renovation.

Improved Table Games

Going against what other Las Vegas Strip operators are doing, Riviera is going back to the old school Las Vegas mentality.  Give the player a good game and a good value, and they will return.  They will also tell others about it like I am doing here.

Riviera has added a Pai Gow and Baccarat pit.  One of the interesting Pai Gow games was Commission Free Pai Gow.  In exchange for not paying commission, the house pushes on a queen high pai gow.  Riviera also offers single zero roulette and a single deck blackjack game that pays 3-2 on blackjack, which is unheard of on the Las Vegas Strip.  In exchange for getting 3-2 on a dealt blackjack, players can only double on 10 or 11.  It is still the best single deck blackjack game on The Las Vegas Strip.

Riviera also offers some low limit table games in video form.  There is a Shoot to Win Video Craps game.  There are also three video blackjack machines, one of which has surrender, pays 3-2 on blackjack and stands on all 17′s.  Both of these games have $2 minimums.  There are other less player friendly blackjack games with a $1 minimum.

1000x Craps

The most interesting change is the addition of 1000 times craps.  This means that a player can bet up to 1000 times their line bet when taking odds.  The table minimum is $5 and the max odds bet is $5000.  While this is mostly a gimmick, at some point a high roller is going to take advantage of this deal.  The house advantage when taking full odds works out to be less than 1/1000th of a percent.  If a player bets the don’t pass or don’t come, they could lay $6000 on the 6 or 8, $7500 on the 5 and 9, and $10,000 on the 4 or 10.  That would be some incredible variance with swings into the hundreds on thousands of dollars.

One other nice addition Riviera made was merging their box office, player’s club, and cashier all into one station.  Now a player that needs a player’s card, a show ticket, and/or a cashout, can do it all in one central place at the casino cage.

Riviera is at a distinct disadvantage being at the north end of the Las Vegas Strip with only Circus Circus within a reasonable walking distance.  They needed to do something to give them an edge over the other casinos.   I feel that they are on the right track in doing that.

Day Trip to Indian Springs Casino

I have been stuck on my writing about the online poker industry.  Nothing has inspired me lately.  I decided to take a drive up into the high desert north of Las Vegas up US95.  About 30 miles past the edge of Las Vegas there is a city called Indian Springs.  The city exists off of what seems to be mostly government jobs.  There is a large prison a few miles south of Indian Springs.  Creech Air Force Base is connected to the city.  Indian Springs is also the closest development to the Nevada Test Site.  On Wednesday, I stopped in a tiny casino in Indian Springs.

At first glance, it looked like just another dive bar with gambling.  I like what others would describe as dive bars though.  I went to the bar to order a beer and the bar was very nice.  There are large TV’s and newer video poker games embedded in the bar top.  The clientele was as you would expect in rural Nevada.  They were very friendly.  They all knew each other and were having a great time watching an automotive bloopers show on the Speed Network.

As with anywhere, the beer is comped if you play.  The games on the bar tops were terrible though.  I decided to go hit the casino floor and see what was out there.  For a while I played video Ultimate Texas Holdem.  I ended up hitting a straight flush so I played the other multi-player game which is six deck blackjack.  Unlike some of the Shuffle Master blackjack machines, this one paid 3-2 on blackjack.  I won a little playing that machine as well.

The slot attendant was very friendly.  I took good care of her and wondered if that was common there at all.  The casino was nearly empty so the service was great.  I have a feeling the service is good no matter what, it just seemed like that kind of place.

There is a caged in sportsbook that is only open a few hours a day on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  During football season it seems it is open daily but two weeks before the Super Bowl I am sure there is little in the way of sports action.  There was also a restaurant but I did not eat there.

If you feel the need to get out of town it is a nice drive of four lane speed limit 70 from Las Vegas.  The highway has mountains on both sides of the road and the western slops were snow capped.  It did not help me get over my writer’s block, but at least it gave me something to write about and a fun night out.  It also gave me a small win to cover the gas and time.